Tough times for indie film producers and distributors

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Just a year-and-a-half after winning a Best Picture Oscar for Spotlight, Open Road is now for sale, and likely to be acquired by Tang Media Partners. Another company, Broad Green Pictures laid off their entire production staff and will focus solely on distribution. The major studios have taken over the box office with big, franchise, spectacle-style releases, and Netflix and Amazon scoop up many of the favorite smaller films at film festivals, leaving few choices for other companies to pick up. This weekend will be a test for Megan Ellison's Annapurna Pictures as the company self-distributes Detroit, a dark drama directed by Kathryn Bigelow. The subject matter of the film -- the 1967 race riots in Detroit -- is no doubt relevant today, but it may be a tough sell at the box office.



Kaitlin Parker